The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ruled Tuesday that the delay in providing medical care to veterans violates their constitutional rights to disability benefits.
In a strongly worded statement the judges noted that here are roughly 1,000 attempted suicides every month among veterans enrolled with the Department of Veterans Affairs, and about 18 suicides a day among all veterans
On average it takes more than four years for a veteran's claims to go through. The court noted that these delays cause "unnecessary grief and privation" for veterans and their families.
"The VA’s unchecked incompetence has gone on long enough; no more veterans should be compelled to agonize or perish while the government fails to perform its obligations," wrote Circuit Judge Reinhardt in the opinion.
This ruling overturned a 2008 verdict of U.S. District Judge Samuel Conti. After two weeks Conti ruled that Veterans' Groups were seeking help from the wrong place.